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tv   Today in Washington  CSPAN  July 12, 2011 6:00am-7:00am EDT

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values decline in this country, to pass things on from the greatest generation to the baby boomer generation. we went from a generation that lived by and practiced what i believe my friend really taught me and dubbed as a big feature in this book. living by what we would call sustainable values. whatever you do, you do it in a way that will sustain. and contrast with that the new boundaries that prevail in our country, situational values. if the situation allows me to give you $8 million mortgage and -- a $1 million mortgage and you are only making $15,000 a year, no problem. neither of us will be here holding the bag. i think we have moved us a country from a generation that practice sustainable values to one practicing situational
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values. that is the first move. the second is what happened to our politics. michele bachmann is a paradigm of what has happened to our political system. you have a lot of political senators and congressmen who come here, and individually they are rational people. why did they behave so it rationally when they are together in one room? the only answer is, life is about incentives. the only way you can explain why they did not take up simpson-bowles is because the incentives are all wrong. move the cheese, move the mouse. these people must be responding to a cheese that -- let's talk about what is that she's. what is that shecheese?
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there is a whole set of political changes that account for that. first has been the purging of liberal, rockefeller republicans from the republican party, and the purging of southern conservatives from the democratic party. both parties are so much more homogeneous. when it their work rockefeller republicans in the republican party and southern conservatives in the democratic party, but party spent a huge amount time negotiating with themselves before they negotiated with the others. we have completely lost all of this. that is reinforced by gerrymandering. testers are purely republican are purely democratic. -- districts are purely republican or purely democratic. then you have a whole campaign finance laws and special -- special interest to overlay on that. the bigger government gets, the more is at stake with special interests. and finally have the media.
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i'm going to tell michele bachmann story. jon stewart made this point. he said 24-hour cable was invented for o.j. simpson. it was invented for the o.j. trial. o.j. does not kill somebody every day, thank goodness. the problem is, these people have to fill those 24 hours even when o.j. has not murdered somebody. so what they do is fill it with michele bachmann. i have a particular grievance with her. i was speaking at the university of indiana. this is a real story. six months ago, i was talking to their honor society. i go back to the hotel room and i turned on the t b. -- i turned on the tv. it is cnn. anderson cooper is doing a story where he is explaining he has to rebut and correct a story he had on the night before. what was the story? congresswoman michele bachmann was on the night before and said
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that president obama's trip to india was going to cost $2 billion. what ever it was. and he had let it go. he did a wonderful thing, anderson cooper. he'd be constructed the whole -- deconstructed the whole story, showed how it began with an unnamed indian official. as if an unnamed indian official in maharajas and would have any idea what the president's trip was going to cost and involved 32 naval ships. this thing was crazy. so he did constructed the whole story. i thought it was so good, i got a transcript and i wrote a column on it, giving him a shout out for doing it. the next day i was giving a talk to the honor society. i get my bagel, my coffee, i sit down at the table lets 7:00 a.m. -- at 7:00 a.m.
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the first thing a young man said at the table is, did you know obama's trip was going to cost a billion dollars? and i said, did not see anderson cooper? i tell this whole story in the book. and michele bachmann just announced for the presidency. that is utterly irresponsible. >> let me talk about the role of new media. in that case, for example, you can argue that it was because of the internet that spread that story, but even before anderson cooper, there were self correcting mechanisms on the internet. do you think the internet is increasing polarization or at some point it will give us enough information that we are better off? >> it is everything and its opposite. the internet took that story and spread it all over the world. and then they all had a field day with it. if you actually eat the constructed the story, and i do
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not remember the website, but there is a website that within hours got to the bottom of the whole story. the great thing about the internet is that it spread alive. if someone can ferret out the backs -- the problem is the complete asymmetry between the people spreading blight and the -- the people spreading the lie and the people ferreting out the facts and giving them to people. the correct facts were there, but you would have to know where to go to find it. there is the asymmetry. let me pick up on that and go back to your question about what kind of america are system has, etc. it gets back to the question of what world we are in. we actually have four chapters on this because they relate to globalization. the education question is a subtext of the subject here. the first chapter is taken from
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the movie "up in the air." many of you saw that movie. that movie to me, when archaeologists dig up the first decade of the 20th century, that is the movie. the guy whose job is firing people face-to-face loses his job to someone who wants to bar them over the internet. -- who wants to fire them over the internet. that is all about what has happened since you hosted the four or five years ago to talk about a book called "the world is flat." i wrote that book in 2005. i thought was on the cutting edge to them. if you open the book up today and look in the index, facebook is not in it. when i wrote it, facebook was not, twitter was a sound, is a parking place, and skype was a typo.
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that is what has happened since i wrote that book, and i thought i was on the cutting edge. now i will take you to the arab spring, because this is related. basically, when i "wrote the world as black," -- when i wrote, "the world is flat." i said we had made boston and bang ago or next door neighbors. to put it in terms of the arab spring, we went from connecting detroit and damascus to connecting them to a dusty, syrian border town where the revolt began. daraa. they have been feeding so much information just through
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cellphone cameras. major media at was banned from syria. every night you can watch footage coming from there, and it is all labeled snn, which stands for "sham news network." the five people in the front row have enough money in their wallet to start sham news network. the world has gone from connected to hyper connected. we have gone from connected to interconnected. we have gotten so much more. it has taken skills and bloated (corrects to what extent do you
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think information technology was the cause of arab spring? >> i think it was a facilitator. just as the early telephone was because of a revolution in 1989. whatever the technology is, people use it, and is always a facilitator. at the end of the day, think about syria and how different it was an incredible opportunity to be in tahrir square when that revolution happened. those people were brave but nothing like the syrian people. the egyptians knew their army was not going to shoot at them. the syrians, every time they walk out the door, they know the army is going to shoot at them and kill them. >> what is going to happen in syria? but you are a damascus
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correspondent for a while. >> my general view is this. every single one of these arab leaders is dead man walking. how or when they go, i cannot tell you, but i will tell you why i say that. what i saw an tahrir square, which was something more than a democracy. it was about three things. this is over and above everything, it was about dignity. it was about people living in a hyper connected world who could see how well china is doing, how well india is doing, and how far behind and had fallen. the number of egyptians in tahrir square who said to meet, i was ashamed to show my egyptian passport. imagine being ashamed to show your american passport. second, it was about justice. these people live in the unjust society. that is why the first thing they did was burned down the
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party headquarters and the police stations. the last thing it was about was freedom. it was not just freedom in the governmental sense, but to run my life, think my thoughts, and collaborate with whoever i want. take all of those three and put them together with one more thing. people forget about the kids who lost their lives when the regime came back. 800 more egyptians that have died in the egyptian army since 1973. one thing that was striking when you went around the square, because i got there the week after that, is that there were small pictures everywhere of the people who died. then there were walls sized pictures of the people who died. they are all labeled in arabic "martyr."
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martyrs for democracy, i have never seen that before. you take a movement propelled by dignity and freedom, and you put it in egypt. what happens in egypt does not stay in egypt. then you have a movement, because every walking, living, breathing arab in the arab world today feels everyone of those things. everyone of these regimes is dead man walking. i don't know when or how. >> to get more domestic, you said that the decade beginning on september 11, 2011, was the worst decade in american history. my first reaction was, where were you during the 1860's?
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lincoln was doing all land grant policies, trying to build the transcontinental railroad, all during the war. >> we argued about for great problems. the next chapter is called ignoring our history. does what he said, walter. i would argue, we are not supposed to say this, so do not let it out of this room. we actually have an industrial policy in this country, a formula for success. as much as some of you might think that you did this all by yourself, whatever will you build, whatever business you start, not in it off, okay? -- not get off, ok?
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-- knock it off, ok? you built this as a result of the greatest public-private partnership in the history of the world. this public-private partnership is best seen in lincoln's time, but we argue it goes all the way back to hamilton. it is built on five pillars. one is education. we educate our people of to and beyond the level of technology. universal primary, universal high school. second is immigration. we attract the world's first round intellectual draft choices and we bring into this country and make them citizens. third, we bill the best infrastructure in the world. for our rules for risk-taking and capital formation. we have rules to govern market and we have rules to exempt people. . incent people.
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the last is government funded research. those are the five pillars of our success. as walter said, look what lincoln did in the middle of the civil war. he passes the homestead act. he creates the transcontinental railroad. you see them repeated in every great president of to the last decade. education, infrastructure -- the american engineering society rates are infrastructure as c-plus. we have a $2 trillion infrastructure deficit. i don't have to tell you what is happening, we are educating the world's best talent and sending them home. how did you like that subprime crisis? government funded research is falling off the chart. >> why? >> if you take all five of the things that got us here, they are all going off the rails. >> why?
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>> it goes back to the politics, sustainable to situational. it gets back to not talking about the world that we are in. there is one of to a congressman -- there is a republican congressman who were defeated in the last election in a republican primary. a republican ran against him because this conservative, south carolina congressman was not conservative enough. can someone help me with this? >> do we have another microphone? >>bob english was the object of probably the greatest political " of the 2010 midterm election. a man stood up and said "keep your felt the government hands off my medicare -- "keep your filthy government hands off my medicare."
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that was a famous one. >> no one wants to connected to the world that we are in. we need to do three things. we need to cut, we need to raise taxes, we need revenue, because we also need to reinvest and reinvigorate our formula for success. i am all for cutting, but if you do not do it in the framework of a plant that is built on the arteries of your success, you are going to make the problem so much worse, it will imperil the american dream. that is what is going on. we are driving without a bumper and the spare tire. we used them just to get out of the subprime crisis.
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we have to have a really, the smart as possible debate and connected with our history and how we got here. >> are you disappointed that obama has not let further on this? >> i am disappointed with everybody. i voted for barack obama. i am not supposed to say that, so strike that for the record. >> please don't let it leave this room. >> if i voted for obama, the reason i would have voted for him is because i thought he would change the polls, not read the polls. i thought he had their unique ability to change the polls. i see a man just reading the polls. i see the republicans behaving with a recklessness. we have two chapters in the book and throughout the decade -- the first decade of the 21st century, we have been at war.
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simultaneously. we declared war on matt and physics. we said deficits don't matter and climate change is a hoax. you can believe what everyone -- whatever you want about climate change, but it is not a hoax. when someone praises mitt romney pour his courage in saying that climate change -- it is not a hoax. what courage for him to say the apple actually dropped from the tree to newton's head. it did not go up the tree. what a brave man, he gets my vote. that is where we are. do you realize how far you are from reality? that is a problem, and that is is called "shock therapy." >> at some point, if they go off the cliff on the debt ceiling and everything else, why don't we -- why isn't there some
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other alternative? >> we think there is, walter. there are two alternatives. if we do the debt the way we should be doing it, that is like going to the dentist and getting a raw and tooth pulled with novocain by the dentist. it comes out, it hurts, but you get out. if we don't do that, i were to is coming out, but are dennis will recall the market and mother nature. that is like having a caveman remove your to with stone rejigger move your tooth with stone tools. there will be blood all over the cave floor and he will probably knocked out a few other t the rounded. -- other three teams around it as well. that is what we are in danger of.
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that is what we told the soviet union they needed at the end of the cold war. we are the ones that need shock therapy now. we need a third party. i am for a third party. if michael bloomberg wants to run, i am happy to vote for him. we need a shock to the system. i have no illusions right now that a third party can win, although i think the country is in a radical mood. i think the country is in a much more -- in line >> are we talking about a few months from now? january, february 2012, assuming things went bad with the debt ceiling, assuming the administration did not get unemployment down, and assuming the republicans nominate someone from the middle of the country -- do you think in 2012 of light blue bar or somebody
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could run? >> i do, and i hope they do. there was a wonderful column about this. how many mornings do you turn on meet the press and there is a republican and democrat debating, each one giving their party line. wouldn't you just love it there was someone in the middle? someone to say these two people are talking complete nonsense. this one actually thinks we can get out of this whole without raising taxes, and this one thinks we can do it without cutting entitlements. what nonsense. that would be pay-per-view for me. i would love that. that is what is totally missing. i do not think a third party can win, for a lot of reasons, but if it is led by a bloomberg,
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it will have more impact on the next president. ross perot at one point had 40% of the polls, and he was nuts. he thought little black helicopters were chasing him. imagine that michael bloomberg runs. he does not need a dime from anyone. he attaches a on to his plan a carbon tax to raise money for government research. he will get more than ross perot's 18.9% of the vote, and i think it would really shake up the system. this system needs shaking up. we are trapped in a corrupt duopoly and basically -- one
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thing about the internet and the hyper connected world. it has gladdened every hierarchy -- flattened every hierarchy in the world from the new york times to the banking industry. it has gladdened every hierarchy -- black and every hierarchy -- flattened every hierarchy in the world except the two-party system, and that will not remain. that is a prediction that i will make. i think this is going to be radical election unless barack obama becomes the third party candidate. >> that texas back to lincoln -- that takes us back to lincoln. you had a movement that eventually changes things. let me open it up. since we have started running people for president. >> i think we only have one microphone. right here, and then who is over here looking for mike?
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>> my question is, if it is dead man walking in the middle east, there is a country called saudi arabia which you have written a lot about. i realize -- what this country does not realize is what happens if it falls. could you comment on that? >> the king is somewhere -- the crown prince is extremely ill. the acting crown prince is also in his 80's an extremely conservative. they claim they have a plan for succession, but let's remember, 50% of the arab world is under the age of 25, and that applies to saudi arabia.
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what they have done is, all these countries that have survived have all made huge payoffs to the people. the saudis gave everybody a huge amount of money. this can become real budgetary problems along the way. the palestinian prime minister said it would be a lot cheaper just to let the people vote. [laughter] i don't know how it unfolds. i hope egypt unfolds in a positive way. i think we are at the top of the first inning still with this whole thing. it has a long time to play out. >> you mentioned the obama factor in one of your columns before.
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i was just wondering if you could elaborate on how the young arabs will be. >> friends in the arab world resisted this because they thought it took away from the people who actually went out in the street. i was trying to think about -- whenever you have of movement as big as something like the arab spring that goes across 300 million people, and has multiple inputs. i did a column just speculating, what are some of the inputs that you did not see on the streets. this was just speculation, but one of them was that when obama spoke in cairo right after his election, i speculated that there was someone in the audience, a young egyptian who looked up and said, his middle name is hussein, my middle name is hussein.
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he is president of the united states and i cannot vote. who knows what see that planted? who knows what seed is planted? during ramadan, people exchange candles as a tradition. they are basically lanterns. i did a column that you do look all across egypt, they have lanterns with a microchip that play egyptian folk songs and they light up. if you turn them over, it says made in china. so you have china making the iconic ramadan gift in one of the lowest wage countries in the world. that is another -- those are the kind of things that nourish this rebellion that are not
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obvious, but were behind the scenes. >> what to do think about the peace process with the palestinians? >> next question out there. [laughter] the people who need arabs bring most right now or israelis and palestinians. i will do a panel on this tomorrow, but i really feel that egypt is going to be the hosni mubarak of the peace process. -- bibi is going to be the hosni mubarak of the peace process. the time to make big decisions in life is when you have all the leverage on your side. that is when you make big decisions. your more intelligence. hosni mubarak had 30 years of leverage on his side to reform egypt, and what did he do?
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he actually joked people more -- choked people more and more every day, and then he tried to do in six days what he should have done over 16 years. it did not work and he collapsed. that asymmetry in power today between israel and the surrounding arab states and the palestinians has never been greater. it has so much leverage on its side. we have an israeli prime minister who has this armed coast rica. -- who behaves as if israel is a disarmed coaster rica. the palestinians have made every mistake in the book, because they were just the flip side of that. you had an israeli prime minister who was offering them up peace initiative, and they played games around that. and let's give bibi his due.
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they had a nine month freeze and in the ninth month, the palestinians showed up. i think this is on a tragic track. you have zero meaningful leadership on both sides and they are heading for a train wreck at the un. i hope we get out of the way. >> we should not be coded? >> i am thinking about that. i am not sure that they do not need some real shock therapy. >> bloomberg -- never mind. >> i was thrilled to hear that simpson-bowles are your ticket. >> stand up, alan, just for a second. make your acceptance speech. just for a second. [applause] absolutely. >> let everyone watching on the
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internet note the applause. >> help me out. you advocated tax increases, and i thought simpson-bowles had a different approach. >> i will let allen answered that question. >> i am happy to see the of the floor to my friend at the center. >> i have just left the witness protection program. [laughter] if i had no new dirty -- what we said, we were stunned. we found one trillion $100 billion in tax expenditures, -- $1.1 trillion in tax expenditures, which were simply tax spending or tax earmarks.
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it was untouchable, no oversight, and a little home mortgage interest deduction, oil and gas depletion allowance, bluecross blueshield, parking for employees -- no income tax on savings of insurance. so we said ok, get rid of them all. take $100 billion and reduce the deficit, take the other trillion and give them a pretax rates, 0 -- three tax rates. $0 to $70,000, 8%, $70,000 to $210,000, 14%, everything over $270,000, 23%, and lower corporate tax to 26 from 36 and go to a territorial support system on distribution of the corporate revenue. there is, and you can do it.
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[applause] >> bravo. right here. >> there seems to be a phenomenon going on that many people in this room and elsewhere in the nine states -- united states have given up on the government so people are doing things in business to make social change. what do you think it takes? does it take just a candidate that people can rally behind? how do individuals participate in this process to make a meaningful change? >> if you do not have a solution at the scale of the problem, you have a hobby. i used to build model airplanes. i would not try to change the climate as a hobby. you really need collective action. god bless everyone starting an
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ngo or a political forum. ultimately, until you can translate into numbers that can actually reverse the supreme court decision on citizens united, you really cannot affect the system. it has to start somewhere, and that leads into the penultimate chapter of this book which is called "the just did not get the word." there are two schools in the country. those that are exceptional -- the president does not put the right emphasis on the first syllable, so we are going to crucify him. americanhink exceptional isn't is an entitlement of social security, that we just did to keep saying we are exceptional. we are optimists, but we are frustrated optimists.
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i am a huge optimist about america. the reason i am an optimist is that this country is still full of people who just did not get the word. they did not get the memo that we are down and out, that we are in a decline, so they go out and invent stuff and create stuff, and is what truly saves us. one of my favorite quotes in journalism, a soldier said they were just too dumb to quit. this country is full of people that are too dumb to quit. if we don't enable and empower those people, we will never get this american dream back to where it needs to be.
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one thing on education if we can get to that. >> the gentleman in yellow. >> i am from new york. just a question on the arab spring. with 27% unemployment, or whatever the number is, and no basic industry or structure or anything else, and the only organized party being the islamists, don't you see some real danger is there? >> the answer is absolutely yes. the way i think about the era of spring is like this. -- the era of spring is like this. -- arab spring is like this.
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my friend bob schieffer gave me my best lesson in journalism. i do not always practice it, but it is the best lesson i ever got. it is all the stories i missed were because i was talking when i should have been listening. it is a great journalism lesson. i did practice that when i was in cairo. every day i walk to tahrir square and i said you know what? you are seeing elephants lie. -- fly. you are seeing something you never thought you would see before. nobody predicted it, and yet it is unfolding before your eyes. shut up, take notes, and keep listing. -- listening. i can give you a million reasons why this will fail. you highlighted some very accurate ones. i was in singapore looking at the singapore school system when this started. then i went to dock post -- davos, and everything erupted in egypt. my wife called and said they are playing your song.
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i have been about the arab democracy thing since the start of the iraq war. she said i had permission not to come home, so i went out there. i will tell you, it is the most remarkable story i ever covered, because it is such a human story. what it tells you is that human beings are capable of surprising in so many ways. but here is what worries me. when you go from singapore, where the government on any given day and ask it sell, how do we better teach fractions to third graders? the whole government there -- i exaggerate but they are thinking about this. you realize in egypt, that never crossed hosni mubarak's mind in 30 years, you realize how much ground that have to catch up.
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>> you began your top with some -- you began your talk with people sank they got used to it about the escalators. it seems like too much of the american public is getting used to it. >> my experience in the last year is how many people are so anxious for someone -- people will be used to it if they think they have no choice, but if they start to proceed there is -- perceive there is another choice, i think that can fled in a second. >> another question about k-12 education. >> i will just make the point, because so much of the book is devoted to education.
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i will talk to you a little bit about the point we are trying to make, which is that what is happening in this hybrid connected world now is, as i said, what labor economists you are more valuable than ever if you have still, and did you do not, there is virtually nothing for you anymore. the days in which the steel mill could come to your town and absorb all the people in the middle are really gone. we have four chapters on this. the second is called "homework times to is the american dream."
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if we want to pass on the american dream to our kids, it is going to take homework times two. all the damages we had coming -- all the advantages we had coming out of world war two or over. -- are over. we have to live the bottom to the average, and that is a huge problem. we have to lift the average so much higher. our kids are being educated for $12 an hour jobs, not $40 an hour jobs. the next chapter is called "help wanted." i tried it out in bill actively -- i try to act conducted late. -- inductively. i am not an educator. what we did was interview employers, and said what kind of employees are you looking for?
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we edge -- we interviewed four business leaders. then we work backwards from that to what kind of education you therefore need. we interviewed four types of employers, 1-, white collar, the head of a washington law firm, the guy who ran in an outsourcing firm, a blue-collar, chairman of dupont, and the head of the biggest green collar employer in america, major- general martin dempsey, now promoted to chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. i will just leave you with this thought. what all four of them said, it was striking how much they had in common, and what they all said was that we need workers who can do critical thinking and problem solving to get an interview. that gets to the last chapter, which is called "average is over." whatever you do, you better
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find your extra. the more the world gets hyper connected has just moved up. my mother-in-law was chairman of the board at a liberal arts college in the middle of iowa. last year, one out of 10 applications there were to china. -- were from china. of those 250 applications, one- half had 800 on the math portion. whole global curb is moving up. what you find out from employers, and this was the most interesting thing -- head of the washington law firm, i said to him, what has happened to your of law firm with the subprime crisis? he said we are laying people off.
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who gets laid off first? >> he said it is not who you think. it is not last in, first out. we handed it to the loggers and they did the work and a nice way and handed it back. those are the ones that are gone. the ones that stay are the ones who say, we could do this work in a new way. there is a new set of work that we can do. his section starts with him explaining my law firm just tired its chief innovation officer. what is happening now, people do not want critical thinking and problem solving, they want people who can invent, reinvent, any job that they are doing. that is going to be the new thing. in the labor market, that will feed back into education. and i had the privilege that when we got out of congress -- college, we got to find a job.
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our kids are going to have to invent a job. >> your daughter was in teach for america and remain to teacher. it takes new types of teachers if we're going to reform the education system, or how would you reform it? >> in the "homework" chapter, it begins by saying that we would never give advice, but he comes to us and if the present one should be secretary of state, we would have said, no, mrs. clinton, and you want the national security job. you want to be secretary of education. i think arne duncan has the top national security job in the country. we have had so many great education panels here, they hear
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some much about technology and new ideas, and what we say in the book is that we really do not know what is sufficient. more charters or less charters, bitter classrooms or smaller, more or less technology. we leave that to the experts to assemble here. there is something we feel we might know and what is necessary, collective action. yes, we always want better educated and better enable, we are all for that, but knock it off with the teachers. we need better parents to prepare their kids to go to school and understand the priorities. we need students ready to come to school to learn. we need politicians who want to raise the educational standards every year because they know what world we're living in very we need neighbors ready to invest in their schools, either their kids are not in them because if they do not invest in that they will be investing in
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prisons down the road, ok? this is a collective test. it takes a village. you take better parents, better neighbors, better children, and better teachers, and the best teachers will be awesome. >> the gentleman there. >> you have developed a lot of energy around k-12, and had you looked dead age 5 were 80% of brain development occurs? very much less money and high leverage. if you could fit to kindergarten at grade level reading, it would have to be brought down to 20%. >> we are not any -- we're not against anything. thank you for raising that. >> the gentleman in the blue shirt back there.
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i would have introduced you. >> i am the chairman of a g100. we put a conference on and the statement was made that 80% of the young american work force is unqualified for the armed forces because of academics, a criminal record, drugs, or obesity. if this is true, and we have not clarified it, but how do we reclaim these people who are out of the educational system already? >> the actual statistic is 75%. we are heading in the right direction. [laughter] it is from a private study done. i cannot verify personally but arne duncan did " that statistic in his speech.
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75% of applicants to the u.s. army cannot get in. that is the cause they could not do simple math, basically. as simple as 2 plus x = 4. we had a segment out of that book called that. it is a terrible problem but part of broader educational deficit we have right now. and as the world gets more and more hyper connected, what basically that means is that our average is over. everyone has to justify their value add. i as an employer now have access every day a little more to more above-average talent anywhere in the world or above-
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average software. if you cannot find your extra to justify that, you're going to have a real problem. that is where the discussion should be starting. that is going to be at the core of national security. you said the army, it will affect our ability to produce. we got through the terrible two's, the first decade, and we created a whole bunch of jobs in construction, retail, and leisure. it soaked up all the people who are developing those skills. now we have taken the steroids away and we are a 9%. that will be their stubbornly for a while. >> arne duncan will be speaking this afternoon, and also spoke earlier this morning. in the green. >> thank you for your comments.
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given the importance of what you have to say, the fabulous cogency with which you say it, the belief that you have any evidence backing it that everything has flattened, and i think the room would agree that the timing of your remarks -- of your analysis about our society should be brought to the public's attention faster rather than slower, i am curious why you did not self-published and get this out right away. >> i do not even know -- i know what self-publishing is. it will be out. there is a real virtue of going to the editing process and careful deliberation, and 18- week delay, that is worth it for me. it will be out there soon again but i appreciate your sentiment.
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>> because of the new media landscape, at one extreme -- and does something out really fast instantly, and the other, we still have the notion of the vote, i will spend a lot of time and think about it -- of the book, i will spend a lot of time and think about it. you say you never used twitter or facebook. one of our discussions on the stage. and then i saw you with the founders of twitter and they were sitting there, poking back at you. do you see your mix of media changing? do you want to be more engaged in social media? will books always be the stable form that you use? >> it is a good question, walter. it is all about how you were, basically. -- work, basically.
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i like to get my news tartare, as it were. i like being in tahrir square. i want to see the posters on the wall saying "mortars for democracy," that someone else might not see. another friend just got up facebook page. she is always busy reading books in the paper. usually formate, also. -- for me, also. i cannot concentrate when people are pinging all the time are seeing what was written. if they stop for that every time someone writes something critical, praiseworthy, challenging, you cannot focus. i do not think you can think straight. i put as much of this technology out of my hands as i can can
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survive, because i am overwhelmed. i get up and this morning and read newspapers. i'll love all that. but you have to know when to stop and go out and report yourself and not get distracted. just to wrap up several points here, the people would say to me, it is easy for you to say. averages over. you have a column in the "new york times pico you do not understand. i inherited jayne west and -- james reston's office, and i would not insult him that he did not wake up and say i wonder what my seven competitors are going to write today? i was up every day and i wonder what my 70 million competitors
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are going to write today. if i cannot offer some bad you had, the best blog out of israel or whatever, if i cannot add value, i am running as fast as i have ever run. and to do that, if you want to take in as much as you can. but if you are overwhelmed by it -- i am not involved in internet wars. if you say something nasty about me, i guarantee i will not fire back. i am too busy trying to figure it out. i see a lot of people in my mind wasting a lot of time and energy that these technologies can take you down into blind alleys. that is why i do what i do. >> we look forward to the book. thank you. >> thank you very much. thank you. >> bravo.
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[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] [instrumental jazz playing] >> this morning on capitol hill, house secretary kathleen sebelius testifies about the medicare payment advisory board, created by the health care law, which makes recommendations on how to bring down medicare costs. live coverage from the house budget committee at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span3. also live on c-span3, transportation industry officials testifying about federal spending for the transportation security administration for 2012. that gets underway at 2:00 p.m. eastern. >> the c-span networks -- providing coverage of politics,
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